This section has been reviewed and updated as needed: June 2014


It is the responsibility of every department and work unit to establish emergency plans in the event of fire, chemical spill, or personal injury.



Employees are responsible for following the procedures outlined in the UNC Environment, Health and Safety Employee’s Handbook.

Work Units

Develop site-specific emergency plans for workplaces in the event of an emergency and/or evacuation alarm. Laboratory units are to incorporate the emergency plans in their Laboratory Safety Plan.


Develop department-specific emergency plan or use the generic emergency plan provided by the Environment, Health and Safety Office in Appendix A. Locations with building-specific plans are listed in Appendix B. The procedure for Protecting the Physically Impaired during an Evacuation Notice is listed in Appendix C. The Departmental Emergency Coordinators responsibilities are described in the University Emergency Plan in Appendix D.

Department of Public Safety

Carry out responsibilities described in the University Emergency Plan (Appendix D). Public Marshals serve as first responder to emergency calls reported to University Public Safety (911).

Environment, Health and Safety Office

Carry out responsibilities described in the University Emergency Plan (Appendix D). Respond to small chemical spills as outlined in the Environment, Health and Safety Office Emergency Response Procedures and Hazardous Materials Facility Contingency Plan. Report to Incident Commander for emergencies reported to University Police or Orange County Emergency Center. Provide first responder support to the Chapel Hill Fire Department and Orange County HazMat Team in the event of an incident involving hazardous materials.

Locations With Building-specific Evacuation Procedures

View a list of locations with building-specific evacuation procedures.

Protecting the Physically Impaired During an Evacuation Notice

If you are physically impaired, it is important that you learn about fire safety, plan ahead for emergencies, and be aware of your own capabilities and limitations. Outlined below are a number of measures to provide for your protection, if an evacuation notice is given for your building.

Many locations on campus will allow direct access to the outside from your floor, or you can relocate horizontally to another building or addition. If you are unable to leave a building during an evacuation notice: REMAIN CALM, DO NOT USE THE STAIRS OR ELEVATORS.

People unable to leave the building will be directed to an area of rescue. These areas were identified by the Environment, Health and Safety Office by training the Departmental Emergency Coordinators and Evacuation Monitors. The Departmental Emergency Coordinators maintains a list of people that are physically impaired and their locations. During an evacuation notice the Departmental Emergency Coordinator or Evacuation Monitors will conduct a floor-to-floor sweep of the building, direct people unable to evacuate to an area of rescue, and provide to Command the locations of persons unable to leave the building.

Areas of rescue are:

  1. Seek refuge in a room with a window, door, and telephone. Call 911 to report your location, and stay there until help arrives.
  2. If staying in place poses a threat to safety, seek alternate areas of rescue that include:
    1. Call 911 to report your location
    2. Refuge in a corridor remote of incident
    3. Refuge in a portion of a stairway landing
    4. Refuge in an elevator lobby with fire doors separating the elevator lobby from the incident

If you need assistance in planning for an evacuation, please call the Fire Safety Officer.

UNC-CH Emergency Plan

The University Emergency Plan was established to outline an organizational structure and to assign responsibilities for coping with emergencies affecting the health and safety of people, facilities, or the environment.